MEDIA RELEASE Regional Development Infrastructure

STATEMENT: LABOR’S REGIONAL HYPOCRISY

It is illogical that Daniel Andrews is undertaking a costly review of Regional Development Victoria while at the same time slashing funding for regional Victoria itself.

The Andrews Labor Government has appointed a panel, headed by former Labor State Premier John Brumby, to review regional development.

In fact, Regional Development Victoria (RDV) remains an efficient link between all levels of government, the business sector and our communities, and has a track record of delivering fantastic outcomes for regional Victoria.

We don’t know how much this RDV review is going to cost, or what will happen to regional investment programs in the meantime. There is a fear it will put the regional investment on hold completely.

Meanwhile, Premier Andrews is cutting the hugely popular $1 billion Regional Growth Fund, which provided funding to communities for their priority projects such as upgrading recreational facilities, parks and CBDs.

The fund secured $3 worth of investment for every $1 contributed by government and created almost 23,000 jobs right across regional and rural Victoria.

Premier Andrews is also cutting the Country Roads and Bridges Program, which provided $40 million a year to local councils so they could fix their priority roads.

Without this vital funding, those councils must either find that money within their budgets by sacrificing other community programs, or simply abandon local road maintenance projects.

It beggars belief that Daniel Andrews would cut funding for these programs while wasting money on an expensive review of RDV.

If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.

Instead of media stunts and endless panels and reviews, the city-centric Andrews Labor Government must step up and actually deliver something for regional Victorians. 

Regional Development Media releases SPORTS AND RECREATION

Bendigo Stadium to undergo $16.5 million upgrade under re-elected Coalition Government

  • A re-elected Coalition Government commits $5 million to Bendigo Stadium
  • Upgrade includes three new basketball courts and 12 new netball courts
  • Victorian Coalition Government is building a more active Victoria 

Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan joined Minister for Sport and Recreation Damian Drum at Bendigo Stadium today to announce a $5 million funding boost under a re-elected Coalition Government.

Mr Ryan said the $5 million investment would be provided through the  Regional Growth Fund and would be the catalyst for a $16.5 million project involving Bendigo Stadium Ltd and Bendigo City Council.

“Bendigo Stadium is a hub for community and elite sport in Bendigo and this upgrade will open up a new range of opportunities for the region,” Mr Ryan said.

“This redevelopment will see three new basketball courts that can be converted to a 3000 seat show court, along with 12 new netball courts with change facilities, catering for more than 500,000 annual sports participants.”

Mr Drum said that the upgrades would help grow participation in a number of sports.

“Basketball, Netball and Volleyball will all get additional new facilities, facilities that are needed to keep pace with demand for sport in the city,” Mr Drum said.

Liberal candidate for Bendigo East Greg Bickley welcomed the investment and said the upgrades would see Bendigo attract more events to put the city on the national and international stage.

“We’ve seen the Stadium successfully host the WNBL Grand Final twice, the Australian Goldfields Snooker Open and the recent Australian Diamonds netball Test, proving that Bendigo supports big events,” Mr Bickley said.

“These upgrades mean Bendigo can host big sporting and entertainment events all year round.

“Already NBL Basketball and ANZ Championship Netball are on the agenda through interest from Melbourne United and the Vixens, and in addition these benefits will be enjoyed by our own Bendigo Spirit and Bendigo Braves players and fans.”

Liberal candidate for Bendigo West Michael Langdon said the commitment was great news for Bendigo and the new facilities would be an economic driver locally.

“Professional sporting events are one example, but also national and international basketball, netball and volleyball underage tournaments and titles could come to Bendigo, as well as attracting big music and entertainment events,” Mr Langdon said.

“I am proud to be working as part of a strong Coalition Government team which continues to deliver for Bendigo and the Goldfields regions.”

Regional Development Media releases Transport

Coalition commits $4.7 million to extend Mildura Airport runway

  • $4.7 million commitment to extend one of Mildura Airport’s two runways
  • Will allow planes to land more often, in all weather conditions
  • Only the Coalition will build a better regional Victoria

A re-elected Victorian Coalition Government will invest $4.7 million into extending one of Mildura Airport’s two runways to cater for more flights, more often.

Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan joined The Nationals Member for Mildura Peter Crisp at the airport today to make the multimillion-dollar election commitment, from the $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

“This extension of one of the two runways at Mildura Airport will mean large commercial planes such as Boeing 737s and Airbus A320s will have more room to land and take off in almost all weather conditions,” Mr Ryan said.

“This will accommodate more frequent flights in and out of Mildura Airport to cater for ever-increasing passenger numbers.

“Local member Peter Crisp has been lobbying strongly for further improvements to the Mildura Airport and I am pleased to say today that it will be delivered by a re-elected Coalition.”

Minister for the Aviation Industry Gordon Rich-Phillips said the funding commitment followed $5.2 million provided by the Coalition Government for the Mildura Airport Terminal Redevelopment Project in 2012, which saw the terminal completely remodelled and brought new air services to the region.

“Thanks to the terminal redevelopment, Mildura is now serviced by three major airlines – Qantas, Virgin and Rex – with regular flights to Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Broken Hill,” Mr Rich-Phillips said.

“There are currently 210,000 people using the airport each year and that figure is expected to double over the next decade if patronage keeps increasing at the current rate.”

Mr Crisp said the runway extension would cater for that forecast growth by allowing planes to land and take off safely in all conditions.

“This will mean more flights, more often,” Mr Crisp said.

“The Coalition Government recognises that the Mildura Airport is at the heart of our region’s economic development and tourism.

“The Liberal-Nationals Coalition is committed to seeing Mildura become even more of a thriving, vibrant regional city and tourist destination.”

Regional Development Media releases SPORTS AND RECREATION

Mildura to host World Motorcycle event under Coalition Government

 

  • World Under 21 Speedway Teams Championship to come to Mildura under Coalition Government
  • A re-elected Coalition Government will continue the Significant Sporting Events Program investing a further $3.5m over the next 4 years
  • Napthine Government  investing in sporting events to build a better regional economy  

A re-elected Coalition government will bring the 2015 Under 21 Speedway Teams motorcycle championships to Mildura thanks to a $3.5 million boost to the Significant Sporting Events Program, Minister for Sport and Recreation Damian Drum and Member for Mildura Peter Crisp announced today.
 
Mr Drum said this would be the first time Mildura has hosted a motorsport event of this stature and is just one of many national and international sporting events that will be held in regional Victoria under a re-elected Napthine Government.
 
“A Napthine Government will provide $100,000 worth of Significant Sporting Events Program funding to bring this world-class event to Mildura,” Mr Drum said.
 
“”This event is expected to bring more than 2000 visitors from around the world to Mildura and there is a projected economic boost of $5 million to the region from the staging of the Championships.”
 
“This is why a re-elected Coalition Government will increase funding for the Significant Sporting Events program by $3.5 million over the next four years.  This is in addition to the $4.8 million already locked into the budget. 
 
Mr Crisp said the Mildura Motorcycle Club had worked extremely hard to bring this event to Mildura.
 
“Our Government provided an initial Regional Development grant of $200,000 that was leveraged into $580,000 by the club members to upgrade the facility,” Mr Crisp said.
 
“That initial investment has made Mildura hosting international motorcycle events possible and today we’re thrilled to announce that this will happen under a re-elected Coalition Government.”
 
“Aside from the economic impact, and the encouragement it will provide for young people to take up the sport, I am particularly excited about the possible worldwidemedia exposure for the Sunraysia.”   
 
“A Coalition Government gives regional Victoria a true voice in terms of attracting international sporting events”.
 
 
“Regional Victoria deserves major sport and it’s the Coalition that works hardest to make that happen.”
 
An independent review of events held from 2012-2014 found a an average return on investment of 12.8 to 1 from the estimated 68,700 interstate and 7,150 international visitors to events supported by the program., many of these events being held in regional Victoria.
 

Regional Development Media releases Transport

Coalition to introduce extra train trips on Shepparton line

 

  • $178.1 million to improve Victoria’s long distance V/Line train frequencies
  • An extra evening weekday service to Shepparton under a re-elected Coalition
  • An additional return trip on both Saturday and Sunday
  • 79 extra long-distance weekly V/Line train trips around Victoria

A re-elected Victorian Coalition Government will introduce extra V/Line weekday and weekend train trips on the Shepparton line, Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan announced today.

Mr Ryan, who was joined in Shepparton by The Nationals candidate for Shepparton Greg Barr, said this announcement was great news for the Goulburn Valley.

“The Victorian Coalition Government wants to double V/Line’s long distance train patronage within 20 years,” Mr Ryan said.

“Commencing in 2016-17, the Coalition will introduce an additional 79 weekly V/Line trips on eight long distance country rail lines – Albury, Ararat, Bairnsdale, Echuca, Maryborough, Swan Hill and Warrnambool, as well as Shepparton.” Mr Ryan said that:

  • the 4:31pm Southern Cross to Seymour weekday train would be extended to terminate at Shepparton at 7:15pm,
  • the additional Saturday and Sunday trains would depart Southern Cross at 1:12pm and arrive at Shepparton at 3:45pm, while in the reverse direction the new weekend train would depart Shepparton at 12:50pm and arrive at Southern Cross at 3:15pm.  These weekend trains would stop enroute at Broadmeadows, Wallan, Broadford and Seymour then all stations to Shepparton, and
  • the 4:05pm Saturdays Shepparton to Southern Cross train would depart slightly later.

Mr Barr welcomed the commitment which he said would be strongly welcomed by locals.

“Locals want more frequent trains. Travellers prefer trains to road coaches, so I am delighted that the Coalition has acknowledged this. Under a re-elected Victorian Coalition Government, this will occur,” Mr Barr said.

Mr Barr said at Shepparton, V/Line would call tenders for construction of a secure compound to stable trains overnight together with new train crew facilities.

“This will ensure that a train is protected from vandalism and graffiti. The compound will be built by 2016-17,” Mr Barr said.

Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder passed on support and said that a re-elected Victorian Coalition Government would examine funding a new crossing loop between Seymour and Shepparton between Nagambie and Murchison East to further increase the number of trains that could operate.

Mr Mulder said that the Coalition would also investigate providing improved air-conditioning to V/Line’s N set carriages that were the mainstay of V/Line’s long distance trains.

“We will make a decision on this within a year of being re-elected,” Mr Mulder said.

Regional Development Media releases Transport

Coalition to introduce extra daily Maryborough line train

 

  • $178.1 million to improve Victoria’s long distance V/Line train frequencies
  • Extra daily return Maryborough train under a re-elected Coalition Government
  • 79 extra long-distance V/Line train trips around Victoria

A re-elected Victorian Coalition Government will introduce an extra daily return train between  Ballarat and Maryborough, Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan announced today.

Mr Ryan, who was joined in Maryborough by The Nationals candidate for Ripon Scott Turner, said this announcement was great news for Maryborough and the region.                                                                                                            

“The Victorian Coalition Government wants to double V/Line’s long distance train patronage within 20 years,” Mr Ryan said.

“Commencing in 2016-17, the Coalition will introduce an additional 79 weekly V/Line trips on eight long distance country rail lines – Albury, Ararat, Bairnsdale, Echuca, Shepparton, Swan Hill and Warrnambool, as well as Maryborough.”

Mr Ryan said the initiative would see the 9:08am train from Southern Cross to Ballarat on Mondays to Saturdays (9:28am on Sundays) extended to Maryborough, arriving at Maryborough at 11:40am and 12 noon respectively.

“On the return, the train will commence from Maryborough at 1:10pm on weekdays, 1:35pm on Saturdays and 3:15pm on Sundays and provide a convenient afternoon train to Ballarat, Ballan, Bacchus Marsh and Southern Cross,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Turner welcomed the announcement and said the extra train would be a further boost to Creswick, Clunes and Talbot.

“The more travel options that these towns have by public transport the better,” Mr Turner said.

“Locals prefer trains to coaches, so I am very optimistic that residents of historic towns like Clunes and Talbot will support the new return daily Maryborough line train by purchasing tickets and boarding the smooth, sleek V/Line VLocity railcars that will make two return trips a day instead of just one,” Mr Turner said.   

Liberal Candidate for Ripon Louise Staley said the tourism industry in Maryborough would  gain from the extra Maryborough line trains.

“V/Line already has an extensive network of trains and coaches from Southern Cross via Ballarat or Castlemaine to Maryborough.  The extra daily train is proof positive that under a Victorian Coalition Government, Maryborough is advancing further as a rural city that attracts many visitors,” Ms Staley said.

Sport and Recreation Regional Development

8-lane indoor swimming pool for Traralgon

 

  • $9 million commitment to build the new Gippsland Regional Aquatic Centre, Traralgon
  • Project to deliver competition 50 metre indoor and 25 metre outdoor swimming pools
  • Coalition Government investing in community sport to build a more active Victoria 

Member for Morwell Russell Northe today announced that a re-elected Victorian Coalition Government will commit $9 million to build the Gippsland Regional Aquatic Centre.



Mr Northe said the Coalition will provide significant funding towards delivering a new indoor/outdoor swimming pool centre in Traralgon.



“Once completed, this state of the art aquatic centre will include the only competition 50-metre indoor facility in eastern Victoria. Importantly for locals, this development will include the retention of an outdoor pool for the summer season,” Mr Northe said.



“This is wonderful news for local swimming enthusiasts who are keen to get on the blocks year-round. It would be great to see Gippsland’s next generation of Olympic swimming champions starting their sporting career up and down the lanes of the new Gippsland Regional Aquatic Centre.



“This is great news for not only recreational swimmers but for the Traralgon Swimming Club, one of the most successful swimming clubs in Victoria.

”

Mr Northe thanked the Latrobe City Council for providing $12 million in funding towards the project.



Newly elected Latrobe City Mayor Dale Harriman said this investment will deliver a heated 50m 8-lane competition indoor pool with a dividing boom, an outdoor 25m 4-lane heated pool, spectator seating and a toddler’s pool.



“There will also be a warm water pool that could be used by health professionals for rehabilitation,” Cr Harriman said.



“This is great news for the local people of Traralgon, Latrobe City and the broader Gippsland region.

“I am confident that the facility will become the centre of swimming in the region, providing huge health and social benefits for Gippsland.

”

The Federal Government has also been invited to contribute to the project, with the committed $21 million providing a good position to leverage any additional funding.



Mr Northe said the Coalition Government is committed to a more active, healthier Victoria and recognises the importance of facilities in achieving that goal.



“A new Gippsland Regional Aquatic Centre will provide an exciting centre for competition and family recreation swimming in the region, we expect these upgrades to grow swimming participation in the region,” Mr Northe said.

Media releases Transport Regional Development Infrastructure Community Services

Extra trains on Traralgon and Bairnsdale lines and track duplication between Bunyip and Longwarry

 

  • $178.1 million to improve Victoria’s long distance V/Line train frequencies
  • Extra weekday and weekend trains on the Traralgon and Bairnsdale lines
  • 79 extra long-distance V/Line weekly trips around Victoria

 
A re-elected Victorian Coalition Government will give the biggest boost to Gippsland’s trains in 60 years with new train trips to be added to timetables on the Traralgon and Bairnsdale lines and more than four kilometres of single line to be duplicated between Bunyip and Longwarry, Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan announced today.
 
Mr Ryan, who was joined in Traralgon to make the announcement by The Nationals Member for Morwell Russell Northe and The Nationals Member for Gippsland East Tim Bull, said it was great news for Gippsland.
 
“The Victorian Coalition Government wants to double V/Line’s long distance train patronage within 20 years,” Mr Ryan said
 
“Commencing in 2016-17, the Coalition will introduce an additional 79 weekly V/Line trips on eight long distance country rail lines – Albury, Ararat, Echuca, Maryborough, Shepparton, Swan Hill and Warrnambool, as well as Bairnsdale.”
 
Mr Ryan said highlights on the Traralgon and Bairnsdale lines include:
 

  • an extra early-morning weekday return peak period train departing Traralgon, stopping all stations,
  • on the return, this new weekday train will depart Southern Cross at 5:10pm and stop all stations, allowing the 4:58pm train to run express from Dandenong to Drouin and then stop all stations to Traralgon,
  • an increased weekend train frequency on weekends with three additional return trains on Saturdays and four extra each way on Sundays, increasing train frequencies between 7am and 11pm on Saturdays and 8am and 9pm on Sundays,
  • extending the 6:37am weekday train from Traralgon to originate at Sale at 6am,
  • extending the 3:19pm Southern Cross to Traralgon train to Sale, arriving at 6:20pm, and
  • a new Sunday return train at 9:25am from Southern Cross to Sale and Bairnsdale where it will arrive at 1:10pm, with an extra train departing Bairnsdale at 2:00pm, arriving at Southern Cross at 5:45pm. 

Mr Ryan said the duplication of the Bunyip to Longwarry section of single track would benefit passengers by improving train punctuality on the Traralgon and Bairnsdale lines.
 
“Bunyip and Longwarry stations will each receive a new second platform with at least a 20 metre long canopy on each to protect waiting passengers from the elements,” Mr Ryan said.
 
Mr Northe said that the extra trains and track duplication would be a huge boost for the Latrobe Valley.
 
“Weekday commuters and weekend leisure travellers will be winners. The Latrobe Valley has strong links with not just Melbourne’s CBD but also Dandenong, so more frequent trains is a marvellous move,” Mr Northe said.
 
Mr Bull said Bairnsdale had already benefited from an additional two weekday return V/Line road coaches introduced earlier in 2014 between Traralgon, Sale and Bairnsdale.
 
“The extra Sunday trains help residents to have a choice of trains to get them to or from Melbourne for the start of the working week,” Mr Bull said.
 
The Nationals Member for Eastern Victoria Region Danny O’Brien said the new timetable would formally bring Sale into V/Line’s commuter belt.
 
“The extra train trips are all about making it easier to work and study,” Mr O’Brien said.
 
Member for Narracan Gary Blackwood was thrilled with the announcement.
 
“For a long time, the community has asked me why the track between Bunyip and Longwarry is only a single line. It is a regular cause of train delays that under a re-elected Victorian Coalition Government will be consigned to the history books,” Mr Blackwood said.
 
“Because Traralgon line trains share tracks with Metro trains between Pakenham and Southern Cross, it is vital that the V/Line trains from Warragul and Drouin arrive at Pakenham on time, or very close to it, to avoid being delayed by a suburban train pulling out just ahead of the V/Line train.
 
“Having two tracks between Bunyip and Longwarry will be very helpful to improving train punctuality on the Traralgon and Bairnsdale lines,” Mr Blackwood said.
 
Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder passed on support and said that the Coalition would also provide V/Line with capital funding to construct a secure train stabling compound at Sale and additional train crew facilities at Bairnsdale.
 
“This will keep the train that will stable overnight at Sale free from the scourge of vandalism and graffiti,” Mr Mulder said.
 
Mr Mulder said that the Coalition would also investigate providing improved air-conditioning to V/Line’s N set carriages that were the mainstay of V/Line’s long distance trains.
 
“We will make a decision on this within a year of being re-elected,” Mr Mulder said.

Media releases LOCAL ISSUES SPORTS AND RECREATION Regional Development

Coalition Government commits to future of Stawell Gift

  • A re-elected Coalition Government will continue the Significant Sporting Events Program investing a further $3.5 million over the next 4 years
  • The Stawell Gift  just one of a number of events to be supported in Victoria by the Coalition
  • Napthine Government  investing in sporting events to build a better economy 

Minister for Sport and Recreation Damian Drum joined Nationals candidate for Ripon Scott Turner and Liberal candidate for Ripon Louise Staley, to announce that under a Coalition Government the future of the Stawell Gift will be secured through increased funding to the Significant Sporting Events Program.

The oldest professional footrace in the world, the Stawell Gift held over Easter is one of Australia’s most iconic sporting events and will be one of many national and international events that will be held in Victoria under a Coalition Government.

Mr Drum said that these events bring economic benefits to the state as well as inspire Victorians to get involved in sport.

“The Stawell Gift brings people from across Victoria, Australia and the world to the region with economic, social and health benefits flowing,” Mr Drum said.

“This is why the Coalition has increased funding for the Significant Sporting Event Program by $3.5 million over the next four years. 

“This is in addition to the $4.8 million already locked into the budget. The Stawell Gift will benefit from $150,000 worth of funding each year for the next four years and a commitment from the Government to work with the Stawell Athletic Club to make the event financially sustainable into the future,” Mr Drum said.

Mr Turner said that the Stawell Gift is an important event for the region and the benefits will be felt by the whole community.

“The Stawell Gift is our iconic major event, the event that showcases to all of Australia what the region has to offer, it is vital economically and for us to develop further tourism,” Mr Turner said.

“Not only will a Coalition Government secure the Gift for the next four years, but the commitment to work on a sustainable model for the future means the event can start to plan forward and become bigger and better.”

Ms Staley said a focus on regional cities and towns means the Significant Sporting Events Program is vital to regional Victoria.

“A Coalition Government gives regional Victoria a true voice, and program and events such as the Stawell Gift are unashamedly viewed as a way to inject tourism benefits for regional areas that can hold and support sporting events as well as anywhere in the city,” Mr Staleysaid.

“Regional Victoria deserves major sport and it’s the Coalition that will work hard to make that happen.”

An independent review of events held from 2012-2014 found a an average return on investment of 12.8 to 1 from the estimated 68,700 interstate and 7,150 international visitors to events supported by the program. Many of these events are held in regional Victoria.

Media releases LOCAL ISSUES SPORTS AND RECREATION Regional Development

Deputy Premier opens Alexandra Oval Community and Recreation Centre

  • Alexandra Oval Community and Recreation Centre opens in Ararat
  • Centre will provide accessible space and better facilities for community sport
  • Victorian Coalition Government invested $1.15 million in the facility

The $3.8 million Alexandra Oval Community and Recreation Centre was officially opened today by Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan and Minister for Sport Damian Drum.

Mr Ryan, who was also joined by The Nationals candidate for Ripon Scott Turner and Liberal candidate for Ripon Louise Staley, said the Victorian Coalition Government was a proud supporter of the project, investing a total of $1.15 million.

Mr Ryan said the investment had delivered new football and netball change-rooms and showers for home and away teams, umpire change rooms, a separate trainers’ room, coaches’ room, first-aid room, offices and a timekeeper’s box.

He said it also included a multi-purpose community space that can seat 200 people, meeting rooms, commercial kitchen, bar, canteen and display cabinets.

“To have a facility such as this is something special for Ararat and it is a project we are thrilled to have supported,” Mr Ryan said.

“Scott Turner has been a big supporter of this project with his role at the Ararat Football Netball Club, and he tells me the boys can’t wait to begin pre-season training with a facility such as this now at their disposal.”

Mr Drum said investing to redevelop sporting facilities was a key focus for The Nationals and the Coalition Government.

“I travel all over Victoria in my role as the Minister for Sport and have seen the inside of many community centres and clubrooms, and I can confidently say this is one of the best,” Mr Drum said.

“The Coalition Government is proud to invest in projects such as this to create more active and healthier communities, while also encouraging more people to participate in local sport.”

Mr Turner, a passionate member of the Ararat Football Club, said it was an honour to be here with the Deputy Premier and the Minister for Sport to open the clubrooms.

“For many years we have wanted a facility such as this here at Alexandra Oval, and to now be here standing in it is a real honour,” Mr Turner said.

 “I know the boys are itching to try out the new facilities and it is sure to make next year one of our best years in recent memory.”

Mr Turner said it was not just the football club which would benefit, with the netball club, Aradale, Chalambar and St Andrew’s cricket clubs, the Grampians Disability Cricket Team and Ararat City Tennis Club to be based here during their respective seasons.

“The new facility will also host community groups and schools for events and activities and can also be booked for wedding receptions, engagement parties, 18th and 21st birthdays and other local celebrations,” Mr Turner said.

“I am certain it will play host to many memorable nights for many years to come.”

Ms Staley said she was impressed by the size and scale of the new facility.

“Communities need modern and functional community spaces such as this to host a wide-variety of events,” Ms Staley said.

“Gone are the days of a single use clubroom that is only used for six months of the year.

“It is pleasing to see so many local groups are going to make use of this facility, delivering benefits to locals right across the region.

“I am a proud supporter of local sport and it is pleasing to be working as part of a strong Coalition Government team which continues to deliver benefits to this part of the state.”